Gameweek 32: Team Selection: Hold Wildcard Longer?

8:46pm Mar 27 2018

To wildcard or not to wildcard, that is the question…

Last week, we looked at a potential Wildcard team for Gameweek 32, but with the way the rescheduled fixtures have fallen, the current plan is to save the Wildcard until Gameweek 36, ready to Bench Boost in Gameweek 37, using the Free Hit chip to bring in Double Gameweek players for Gameweek 34.

We’ll talk more about strategy in the Gameweek 32 Q&A episode though on Wednesday evening, so let’s move on to the potential team selection for this weekend’s action.

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Goalkeeper

Stoke travel to Arsenal on Sunday, so Nick Pope will be preferred to Jack Butland between the sticks, as Burnley take on bottom of the league West Brom.

Burnley are undefeated in their last 3 league games and have shipped 5 goals over their last 6 matches; only Spurs (3) and Man City (2) have conceded fewer goals over that period.

Defenders

With Xherdan Shaqiri facing a tough fixture away to Arsenal and Callum Wilson remaining out of form, we’re opting to play 4 defenders this week, to accommodate Craig Dawson.

Despite losing against Bournemouth last Gameweek, the Baggies didn’t concede a single ‘big chance’ and we’re actually leading until late on in the game.

Liverpool have conceded just 3 times in their last 4 matches, keeping 2 clean sheets, so Virgil van Dijk remains in the team for the trip to Crystal Palace, alongside Nicolas Otamendi, as Man City prepare for their Saturday evening clash with Everton.

The league leaders have kept clean sheets in 3 of their last 4 league games, conceding just once during that time.

Midfielders

There is likely to be a transfer made in midfield, as we say prepare to goodbye to Theo Walcott and replace the Everton man with the in-form Riyad Mahrez.

During his last 3 matches, between Gameweeks 28 and 30, the Leicester City midfielder has provided 2 goals and 1 assist, while his tally of 7 shots on target is joint 1st amongst all players, along with Chelsea’s Willian.

Raheem Sterling returned from injury for Man City’s last Premier League fixture, where he provided an assist against Stoke; his 26th FPL involvement of the season.

He’ll, of course, be joined by Mohamed Salah as well as Bournemouth’s Junior Stanislas, who’s enjoying a good spell of form himself, having provided 4 goals and 2 assists during his last 8 appearances.

His tally of 10 shots on target in that time is 2nd amongst midfielders, beaten by only Mohamed Salah (12).

Forwards

We’ll be looking to make a second transfer for a 4-point hit, to bring in Arsenal’s in-form Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, ahead of the home fixture against Stoke.

During his time at Arsenal so far, between Gameweek 26 and Gameweek 30, he’s contributed to 4 Premier League goals, scoring 3 times himself. His 7 efforts on target in that time is on par with Sergio Aguero; only Harry Kane (10) managed more amongst forwards.

Roberto Firmino partners the Arsenal man, ahead of Liverpool’s trip to Crystal Palace.

Jürgen Klopp’s side have scored 16 goals during their last 6 league matches, which is more than any other Premier League team.

Captaincy Thoughts

For captaincy this week, Aubameyang perhaps has the most optimal fixture, on paper but it would take a brave FPL manager to overlook the incredible consistency, explosiveness and high-ownership of Mohamed Salah.

The Liverpool midfielder was directly involved in all 5 of his team’s goals against Watford in their last Premier League match, scoring 4 times himself.

He’s now provided a total of 39 FPL involvements this season; at least 12 more than any other player.

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